2017-09-14 / Letters

Medicaid is saving lives

To the editor:

According to Michigan Health and Human Services Director Nick Lyon and state budget director Al Pscholka, the Affordable Care Act’s Medicaid expansion (Healthy Michigan) is working and saving lives. Lyon says the earlier care newly covered residents receive helps them avoid more expensive, chronic illnesses and trips to the emergency room. This reduces everyone’s premiums. Approximately 44,000 people are enrolled in Healthy Michigan in the 1st Congressional district. Yet Congressman Bergman voted for cuts that would cost Michigan an additional $800 million a year to fully maintain the program, which Lyon and Pscholka say would be “very tough” to do.

The ACA has cut the number of uninsured in half in Michigan. Notably, the 1st District has the highest ACA Marketplace participation rate in the state and the second most Marketplace enrollees. Obviously, the ACA is extremely important for the people of Congressman Bergman’s district.

Yet, Congressman Bergman voted for legislation that the Congressional Budget Office concluded would have caused many of his constituents to lose their coverage, while dramatically increasing costs for others. When will Bergman start working on behalf of the people of northern Michigan? A good start would be for him to do everything in his power to prevent President Trump from destabilizing individual health insurance markets. Of particular urgency is passing legislation to protect cost-sharing reduction payments which reduce deductibles and copays for many low-income, hardworking Americans.

Fred Cepela
S.Lake Ct.
Solon Township

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